Cochise’s Monster

It was November 1st. Yesterday’s rain had turned to snow: we had a couple of inches on the ground when I got up just before 5:00.

Blondie-Cochise warder-offers of monstersNormally Cochise gets up when I do and comes out to keep me company in the living room where I will study for an hour or so. Not today. It’s cold this morning and he decided to stay in his warm bed. I couldn’t blame him.

I lit a fire in the fireplace to chase away the chill and settled in to read. In a while Cochise decided to come lay in front of the fire.

I heard a sound. To me it sounded like snow falling off the roof to the ground with a “fwoomp”. Cochise jumped up and ran through the house barking: “Monster, monster! There’s a great beast outside: I must go scare away the monster. Let me out!”

I let him out. Blondie went with him. Both were out quite a while, patrolling the pitch-black morning. I turned on the outside spotlights, that reflected off the snow for a ways and I caught glimpses of them as they trotted through the pools of light to disappear into the dark again. They seemed to be having a good time. I went back to my studying.

In time they were on the back porch wanting in. I barricaded the end of the laundry room to contain them while I wiped off their feet and toweled them as dry as I could get them. Then they joined me by the fire once again.

There were still odd sounds outside, and they kept Blondie nervous and pacing.

As dawn broke we heard Marie stirring in the bedroom. We paraded back to greet her. I attended to the morning testing and administration of medication. As she prepared to move to the sofa (so she too could enjoy the fire) I noticed what had set off Cochise earlier.

tree MonsterCochise’s monster was a good sized tree – 40 to 50 foot tall, I’d say – that had come down under the weight of the snow. It has just missed our garage and Lupa’s pen. That was fortuitous. It did crush a small peach tree. That was unfortunate, but of no great matter.

I fixed breakfast, we all ate, and I cleared the mess away. Then Blondie and I went outside to see to the foster dogs.

I’ve had trouble getting Lupa to leave her blanket in her dog house. She prefers to drag the blanket out and sleep on it in the open. That’s fine while it’s warm. Not so good when it’s cold and wet. I had a chat with her yesterday when I said goodnight to her. It must have sunk in because, though Lupa was now out fence dancing, the blanket was inside the igloo and rumpled up. She had obviously slept there last night. That’s good.

They got their kibbles and a playtime in the snow. I can see I have some work to do in the yard and garden today.

Snow Surprised from Doug Bittinger on Vimeo.

When I got the dogs back where they belong and went in to wash their kibble dishes, I found the power was out. I wasn’t a bit surprised: I’d been hearing trees cracking and falling in the woods all through the play time. One may well have come down across a power line. I’m sure we’re not the only ones, so it may be a while before the power comes back. Time to hunker in and make sure we have plenty of firewood on hand. That’s winter in the mountains, though this is usually not a threat until late January or February. But, it is what it is. We’ll be fine, as long as a tree monster doesn’t fall on us!

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